Tithing - Net or Gross Blessings

Tithing was something that I had paid as a youth but as I got older I stopped paying. I had earned my four year award except for tithing in the fourth year.  It hurt to miss the award but in my honest opinion I was not worthy.  When I was offered the opportunity to pay some tithing  for the previous year to receive my the award. I refused because I would not buy the award.  Not too long after this I became inactive.

Fast forward 20+ years and I start back to church. In January we start paying a tithe on my take-home pay. This takes every every dollar that we have. This excludes a ten percent deduction for my tax deferred annuity. My rational was that I would not receive this money until I retire.  In February I was interviewed to receive the Melchizedek Priesthood. During this interview I explained my idea on deferred annuities. Bishop Long just said “do you want net or gross blessings?”  Well of course I needed all the blessings I could get!  I promised to start paying a full tithe on the gross earnings as he recommended . I am ordained an Elder and then I get my next paycheck and it is time to pay tithing.  A problem arises because I can only change my annuity deductions at the beginning of a new school year thus, I am going to be really short. I cut my payments on bills to the very minimum like $5 or $10.  I still come up short $70.00.   As I am trying to find a way to keep my promise tears are running down my face and I cannot think of anything to do. After some time the telephone rings and Carla is on the phone and she says dad I feel a need to call you and remind you that I do not need a check for my rent.  Remember we paid for the first and last months when I signed up.  Guess what her rent was, you are right $70. Now the tears really did flow.  If the Lord can call me on the phone and give $70 I will never stop paying my tithing.  Remember He not only solved my problem this month but for the next four months.  I can testify that Malachi was right He will open the windows of heaven and pour out blessings to you. Maybe I now qualified for the blessing John Tanner (my great-great-great-grandfather) received from the Prophet Joseph Smith, “That your family will never beg for bread”.